Tuesday, May 31, 2011

How hot is it?

Too hot, that’s how hot it is. I’m very thankful I have this lovely porch to sew on, the sewing room upstairs is unbearable. It’s not that cool back here either, but better than upstairs. And I have a system worked out to stay comfortable. If I have to go back in the house it is freezing, if you call 76 freezing. Then when I come back in here it’s a little warm. So I go outside for five minutes or so, and when I come back in here it’s almost chilly… works every time.

I am sewing up a storm, one top finished, and I really love it. It will be hard to give this one away. But my focus fabric is orange, and I’m not much of an orange decorator, so this lovely will have to go somewhere other than my house.

I like the pattern so much I am making a second one. The fabrics in this are mostly green and yellow… also not in my d├ęcor, but I know it will be loved where ever it ends up.

I am leaning towards the end of the month for this mystery. I believe I will post the first clue on the 29th or 30th. If you want to join in, request to join Fabricaholics or Mysteries For Relay. (Only the Mystery group will get the full pattern, non-mystery directions with many different size requirements.)

Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day

Memorial Day is a United States federal holiday observed on the last Monday of May. Formerly known as Decoration Day, it commemorates U.S. Service Members who died while in the military service. First enacted by an organization of Union veterans — the Grand Army of the Republic — to honor Union soldiers of the American Civil War. It was extended after World War I to honor Americans who have died in all wars. (from Wikipedia)

Memorial Day should not be known as the official start of summer. Memorial Day should not be a big sale day in stores to draw in customers. Memorial Day should not be known as race day.

Memorial Day should ONLY be known as a day to remember those who have died in giving us the freedom to call the day whatever we want and the freedom to do whatever we desire this day and every other day.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Sewing and making progress

While sewing I look out on the deck and see this lovely pot of petunias blooming. I love the colors.

Today I am making progress on the summer mystery sample. I have all of the units done, now I can start putting together my top. I am happy with it so far, and am hoping I have enough backing fabric, I’d like to get this one quilted ASAP!

While sewing I’ve been tweaking the pattern some, making suggestions here and there that I hope will make this go together smoothly for all the ladies who want to make it.

I’ve learned for myself that I need to pay attention to what I am doing, I’m not watching the needle/fabric location and had to redo quite a few units because the seam allowance wasn’t big enough.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

I survived!

I survived dress shopping AND I even found a dress. Very interesting excursion I will say, I’ve never been to a bridal saloon before. Whoops, bridal salon…. Both would be equal torture to me, LOL! But this one was quite pleasant with lots of room and very open and comfortable. There were two walls lined with mother-of-the-bride dresses and I truly thought I would not find a dress that suited me. They were either too slinky, strapless, clingy or so overly glitzed up that I wouldn’t be caught dead in it. The girl kept pulling dresses off the rack I would never wear, and I was truly starting to feel like it would be t-shirt and jeans for me at the wedding.

I was relieved when Terry, the mother of the bride, told me she felt the same way. She tried in several dresses and looked great in all of them. I went into the closet to try dresses on and … no, not for me. One I couldn’t figure out how to get off the hanger, so it stayed there. Another one I thought might work was itchy with lace, so it went back on the hanger. I tried on one maybe, but it was too revealing and sleeveless, and the jacket was itchy.

The girl went and pulled to more dresses, and one looked good on the hanger so I knew it had a fighting chance. She had to help me put it on, since it was too small. But we managed to get it over the hips, and almost all the way on. It had a padded bosom, something I do not need, but since I couldn’t get it over my naturally padded bosom it didn’t matter. I went out and showed it off, me and my four boobs, and we all decided it would work.

Then to decide color. The color I wanted, eggplant, was too close to the mother of the bride’s dress and I felt she should have first choice. There was one color on the list of names that cracked me up, Royple. It gave me the giggles and I had to ask what it was. Well it turns out it is exactly what it sounds like it would be, a cross between royal blue and purple and perfect for the mother of the groom.

I hadn’t even looked at the price, and now was terrified to do so. A few of the dresses that I’d looked at the price tags of where well over $500, several close to $1000. I only paid $85 for my own wedding dress… I sat down in a comfortable chair, and turned the price tag over…. Whew! Only $230. I could afford it. And it’s royple… I’m a happy mother of the groom!

PS, this is my dress in red. Now if I could grown my hair long and lose 100 pounds I would look like this... dreaming.

And I forgot to say I will be shortening it. With what I have to cut off to make it my length I might get enough fabric to put sleeves on it, which I might just do.

PS. yes, the sleeves you see are a jacket, worthless jacket in my opinion. If there isn't enough fabric to make sleeves from what I cut off to shorten my dress, I might use that sheer jacket to make sleeves. One way or another, I will get sleeves on that dress.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Good news Bad news

Today was Doctor day and I came out with mixed results. Bad news, the stiffness and achy feeling is probably the polymyalgia rheumatica. Both blood counts went in the wrong direction. That means I am stuck on the prednisone a few more months, three at least because unless I get really bad, that’s when the Doc wants to see me again.

Good news, despite the prednisone I have lost 7 pounds. Seven whole pounds, yippee! So glad that is going in the right direction. Now if I can stick to myself imposed diet and keep away from Dairy Queen, I can keep losing.

However, I was soooooo tempted to hit DQ on the way home to celebrate the loss… my fortunately the brain kicked in, DQ will have to wait for a special occasion. Anniversary in June, DQ for dessert!!!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Last Show

I was just talking to a friend on the telephone and she asked me if I watched the Last Show. I said we didn’t watch that series and she said “what?” I said that I didn’t like that kind of show, too much drama and blood for me.

She said again “What? I explained I don’t like violence, think there is enough of it in real life and I watch shows that are funny and entertaining, or educational. She said this time, “WHAT are you talking about?” I said “What are YOU talking about, I never watched the Last Show?” She roared, at me I might point out, and said that I needed to watch more TV.

I said “There isn’t anything on to watch, although I did see a neat show last night about the rebuilding of the Parthenon.”

She laughed and said “OMG” and I said “What?”

She said you didn’t watch Oprah’s last show? And I said… I thought she went off the air a few months ago, I remember them talking about it on the news…

At this point she was laughing and choking at the same time, serves her right for drinking while talking to me on the phone.. She said Oprah had her last show and that I was probably the only person who didn’t watch it.

I didn’t have the heart to tell her that I’ve probably watched less than an hour of Oprah and that was only while channel hopping. I don’t watch daytime TV unless I am desperately sick. I honestly can not remember ever watching a whole episode… guess I never will now.

So was I the only person who didn’t watch it?

And by the way, I only caught the last five minutes of Idol because it ran over and we were looking for local news and weather, weather more than news.

I'm being watched

This little fellow is fascinated with my work. He gets a drink, then hovers around the window to check my sewing and then goes and sits and watches me for a few minutes before flying off to who knows where. I tried catching him looking at my row of sewing, but he flittered around too much and was way out of focus.

Anxious to sew

With the machine cleaned and oiled I was raring to go, but didn’t have any scraps down here to test it with. So I sewed on the selvage edges just to make sure there was no oil left over anywhere. She was clean and ready to go, so I cut one unit of the upcoming mystery and sewed, and sewed, and sewed. For an old machine she is doing terrific, and I am really enjoying sewing on her.

For those who asked the machine is a Singer 404, straight stitch, slant needle, gear driven machine made sometime in the late 50s, early 1960. It is an all metal machine and quite heavy, and heavy duty too. I’ve owned this machine since 1973 when I bought it at the Singer store in McCreless Mall in San Antonio Texas. I loved the way it ran, and the repair man said it was a great machine, so I bought it before anyone else could. She has never let me down. Even after being in storage for over six years when we went overseas she was ready to go when I started her up.

Since moving here to Delaware I’ve used her mostly for mending, but if she keeps on sewing the way she has this morning, I will certainly use her more.

And Jan, the plant is well under the leaf of the cabinet and there isn’t any way I could trip on it. I may have to move the plant on the right however, one leaf tickles me as I reach for my thread basket (which is not in the photo)

PS, I started to post another photo of the machine in action, showing the thread basket and tickling plant... then I realized I was also showing a unit of the mystery... so no photo!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

New sewing space

I’ve given up on the upstairs sewing room for the summer, just too hot for me. I’m going to be sewing here, and probably cutting in the office because there is a table in there the right height.

I like my view…. hope I can get some sewing done here.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Too hot to sew

Yes, I know I said that yesterday, but it is even hotter today, 90 outside right now. That heat outside makes the second floor very warm, too warm to sew. So here I am again downstairs working on the lap top….

Working is an understatement today. I’m goofing more than working. I’ve been blog hopping, I’ve been reading group emails, I’ve been dress shopping. Not really shopping, just looking. This weekend the mother of the bride and the mother of the groom, me, will be getting together with the bride and going dress shopping. I thought I’d look and see what was out there… if what I see on line is what I’ll find in the store, I am in big trouble. I did not see one dress in 90 minutes of looking on line that I would wear.

That depressed me, so I stopped looking and started a book… book didn’t interest me either, so I ended up shopping for books to download. But I want to sew, so I’m just sitting here doing nothing. Boring day isn’t it?

Monday, May 23, 2011

Too hot to sew

Yes, we had a hot one today, most of the afternoon anyway, and the upstairs was just too hot for me. It didn’t used to bother me, but in the last few years the heat upstairs has really bothered me. And today, after visiting the vampires, it was just too hot up there.

So I came back down to the cool air and worked on the computer. I have a mystery in the making and I got a good part of the pattern written. Tomorrow morning before it gets hot I will go up and start cutting.

And if it stays too hot then I will have to set up my little machine and sew downstairs until the cool weather comes back. Nice to have a spare and a place to put it!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Another top done from the magical box

(Note; I received a box with a friend’s UFOs in it, blocks she had no desire to finish in any way. I called it a magical box because I see everything in there as a future quilt.)

This is top two from the magical box, three if you count the pioneer braid that is ready to be made into a quilt as soon as I get some sashing for it. The first top was the pineapple blocks shown here and now this one. I used small strips she had cut, assumingly for the pioneer braid and made these eye spy blocks. I have a charity in line for this quilt already.

Now there are some half string blocks, I think I will see what I can do with them. The last thing in the box are pairs of rectangles I have no idea what to do with, but guaranteed I will think of something.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Sewing day

When I finally made it up to the sewing room, I was inspired to make some scrappy eye spy blocks. I’m using a pattern Cindy sent me from Comfort Stitching I had the eye spy pieces and I am also using some of the scraps that came in that magical box. I made nine blocks, which I think is enough for a kids quilt. I was cutting out the sashing when company showed up.

After dinner we decided to go to a favorite place for dessert.

We always take our goodies to the beach to enjoy. While sitting there I was reading the sign, which I think is funny. Not all of it, but honestly, the majority.

No alcohol, ok… no drunks on the beach is a good thing. No jet skis… ok, no little kids getting run over by jet skis. Good thing. No dogs in the summer, good thing, no dog doo doo. However, I counted seven dogs on the beach tonight, guess they don’t know the date. No vehicles, always a good thing so no kids get run over, it’s a small beach. No boating, makes sense to me.

Now it gets good. No balls or Frisbees? Wait, this is a beach. No balls or Frisbees? That has to be a mistake. Apparently people aren’t reading the sign, there was a family playing Frisbee and another family playing catch…. AND shudder, there were a whole bunch playing volley ball over an imaginary net.

No sleeping on the beach? Heaven forbid you fall asleep and get arrested for doing so.

No fishing? I loved watching all the little kids with their fishing poles trying to catch a whale… guess they can’t do that any more.

No fires, that means no roasting hot dogs and marshmallows. Darn.

Finally, Beach party permits required. What is a party? Is that family playing Frisbee a party? The gang playing catch? Do they need a permit to play volley ball? I mean there were ten of them out there, certainly that’s a party!

And it says “Strictly Enforced by Police”. Yep, that I know for a fact is true, they hire beach cops. I want to be there when they arrest a two year old for fishing, or a baby for playing with a beach ball. And that Grandpop and Grandson tossing the ball… lock them up.

Friday, May 20, 2011


The 10:00 news just started off with the world will come to an end tomorrow. Guess that means my UFOs will stay UFOs. Am I ready? Other than quilt wise yes. When the end comes, regardless of how it comes, I am ready. Two sure things, you are born and you die. All the rest that comes in between is what we call life. That includes all the UFOs.

Two tops done

I got two tops done today, one I started and one someone else started. I finished my mystery top, the one I started before Relay. As I said before, when I started it I liked it. Then I didn’t, then I did and now that the top is finished, I don’t again. It’s not ugly, but it’s not me.

The other top I finished came in a box of blocks that a friend didn’t want to finish. I have no idea why she didn’t want them, I see lovely quilts coming out of that box. Today I finished one of them, pineapple blocks. I didn’t have the sashing blocks, so put it together without them and they look great!

Also in the box were some pioneer braid strips…. I can’t wait to get some sashing to put them together into a quilt… I think there’s a queen size quilt in them!

My own projects are calling to me, so it will be interesting to see what I do next.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Bonnie commented…

Laughing at you Marge... or, knowing you, with you re boring colors. You really haven't been up sewing in quite a long time! I generally can remember the backside of my blocks... but not always.

As for your finish a top before starting another? What would you do if you didn't have a ufo to take out and rant at... or talk about... you get the picture. Thanks for a laugh this morning. B.

Yes, she knows me well. I do sew up… upstairs, and yes, I normally do remember the backsides of my blocks. Or actually what the front side looks like when I can only see the backs. But in the case of the current WIP, I started them so long ago that I did not remember the front side until I opened them up to iron them out. And the other thing… many of the fabrics in this project are not MY fabrics, they are fabrics I purchased on eBay from a now friend.

As for finishing a top before starting another… a UFO top is MUCH easier to deal with than a bunch of blocks. I’ve found that if my UFO is just blocks, I am not motivated at all to finish them. If it is a top, all I need is backing, a ride to the quilter, binding and then it is done. That’s my theory at least and that is what I hope to do for now on.

The quilt is question is progressing and I am still liking it a lot.

PS, My I HIRED A MAID didn’t work, I got more maid spam this morning. And I got a whole bunch of apartment spam… why do they think I’m looking for an apartment? Maybe because I said on here that we’re selling the mobile home?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Something I haven’t done a lot of recently, not since before Relay. I’ve had a project on the sewing machine, and every time I looked at it I got bored. Today with renewed interest in another quilt I want to make, I forced myself to work on this project. (New rule I imposed on myself, finish one top before starting another.) So I trudged along sewing one boring block at a time. Finally the pile was done and I moved on to the next step…. ironing.

Imagine my surprise when I opened up those blocks and was wowed and amazed at the colors. My problem with the pile on the sewing machine, I was looking at the wrong side of the fabrics, and when I opened the blocks up I saw color and pattern and now I can’t wait to move on to finishing this quilt… I am going to LOVE it!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Spammers read blogs

How do I know? Well last week I blogged about needing to clean house and since then I have been swamped with ads about house cleaners, on average 20 a day. I’m not reading them, just deleting, but it doesn’t stop them from emailing me. Perhaps if I say I HIRED A MAID they will leave me alone. It’s not the truth, but worth a try.

And I am known for my generous donations to charity, which is I’m sure why everyone who wants a buck emails me. And people are so generous too, I’ve won more lotteries than I’ve ever entered.

But then again, that might not be true, about spammers reading blogs. I am happily married, and yet I still get emails from Match.com and one to “Meet DE Christian Singles” and even though I’ve quit Facebook I’m still getting Facebook Dating emails. And I just said I as happily married and I’ve never said anything about my …. hmmmm…. how do I put this…. well… ummmm…… about my sex life, but I still get those emails.

What would life be like without spam… will we ever know?

Monday, May 16, 2011

Uh oh, it’s happened!

I knew one of these days it would happen, my brain has exploded with ideas! I’ve been blog hopping looking at all the quilts in Amy’s Blogger Quilt Festival, and would see a quilt I liked and look deeper at it, perhaps clicking on a link or information about a quilt ….. and from there I would look at another blog and another one and kept making notes, and getting ideas, and more ideas and more and more and WOW…. Kaboom… the brain over loaded on me.

Here I sit in my sewing room with a unfinished project on my machine, another one ready to go on the cutting table, three more stacks of fabrics pulled for three more quilts, 37 UFOs on my UFO list, 18 untested future mysteries and or patterns, and now a billion (or close) new ideas for new quilts, and even a few new mysteries.

The quilt on my sewing machine has no chance of being finished if I start another project. I KNOW how it will look finished, and I like it, but am not impressed enough with it to take it any further. It will make a nice quilt for someone, period.

The quilt cut out on the cutting table will also make a nice quilt for someone, and also will go no further than being a quilt to use up fabric. I wanted to try the design, it’s OK, but not anything that special… although who knows once it’s finished I might like it better.

And all these new ideas…. I have the fabrics, I have time, if only I didn’t have to sleep I’d have a LOT more time… but can I possibly do them all… and which one do I do next?

Sunday, May 15, 2011

What’s wrong with you?

That was a question from Kathy this morning in an email.... LOL… nothing, honest, I am fine. I am just being lazy. I go for my check up at the end of the month, and am hoping, fingers crossed, that I can maybe get off this medicine. I’m ready, I just hope my blood agrees with me. I have to see those vampires, and then the Doc.

I’m not quilting, just not in the mood. Instead I am cleaning house, well straightening more than cleaning. The cleaning will come later, after I’ve gotten myself organized. I can’t believe how unorganized I’ve become between the Retreat and Relay… I couldn’t even find a camera charger this morning.

Speaking of cameras, my little one broke at Relay, the retractable lens cover fell off. So I went on line looking for a new one. I kind of liked the old one, so was happy to find several up for auction on eBay and after losing several auctions I went ahead and used "But it now"… and it was cheaper than the ones I bid on anyway.

It arrived on Saturday and since I already knew how it worked, I just took a few test shots and then put it away. When I did that I found a camera that had been gifted to me, and decided to try that one out. It’s ok, but doesn’t have the features I like on the Canon. And the battery was low, and I couldn’t find the charger, which lead to the straightening. Found the charger in my briefcase, which I hadn’t used since the Retreat….

I’ll get back to quilting soon, been reading magazines while “straightening” and am getting lots of ideas… I’ll be back at the machine soon.

Friday, May 13, 2011

It's that time again

Time for the Bloggers’ Quilt Festival

I'm not participating, but I sure am enjoying looking at all the quilts!

Amy's Creative Side

Thanks Amy!

No I am not lost

And yes I am OK… I am just in what I am calling my “post-Relay slump” Although I think Relay is telling me to take some time off, since the web site isn’t cooperating with me at all lately. First my virus program told me the site was unsafe and then I get blank pages.. nothing, no “page not found” or such warnings, just a totally blank page. OK.. I get the hint, take a day off.

But I took a few days off, two Mother’s Days and Tuesday too so I feel guilty in taking another day. But I did it anyway… had a nice long chatty lunch with my pal Jamee and came home to do some more work… Relay page still not cooperating, it was there, then I signed in and then it wasn’t there anymore. So I’ll sew… nope, machine wouldn’t go on… wait, the fan stopped…. OH… I see, power is off again. Funny about that, power has been off and on several times today.

So I’ll write this now, thank goodness for a battery operated lap top, just wish my air card would cooperate and let me post this…. Wonder if I will remember to post it when power comes back on.

Few hours later, I remembered, but guess what…. So I tried again later, same thing and then again first thing this morning. So I went about doing some other things, boring things like laundry. After lunch I read a little bit, and something I read reminded me I never posted so I checked, and what do you know, it’s back!

Now I’m going back to doing nothing a.k.a. relaxing!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Mother’s Day continued…

Yes, I got a second day out of it this year. Jonathon stayed a second day and did some well needed odd jobs around the yard. Then we dug him up some plants to take back up to his town house, some shade tolerant plants that he could add to his garden, iris, hosta, and some tiny iris called Japanese iris, easy to grow anywhere and plants I’m sure even he can’t kill…. Unless he doesn’t put them in the ground soon enough.

Then we went out for Mother’s Day dinner. I had a craving for ribs so we went to TGIF and had a great dinner. We had a short visit with both boys at and after dinner and then they went on their separate ways.

John is still off, well partially off, he’s working from home this morning but has the afternoon off. Early this morning before it got too hot we did a little more yard work, then he came in to work and here I sit. I want to sew, but I know the minute I go upstairs I’ll think of something I need to do down here, so here I am… trying to decide what to do. I’ll get around to it eventually.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Mother’s Day

One day last week I got an email from my oldest asking what I wanted for Mother’s Day. I said that the best gift they could give me would be time in the yard helping their Dad with things he couldn’t do by himself. Well guess what, they listened! However they said they wanted to know what I wanted done first…

There was this “stuff” on the patio that I had asked them not to put there in the first place, starting about five years ago… I wanted my patio cleaned off.

Well they cleaned it alright!

“What’s next Mom?” Well my poor dogwoods were being swallowed up by the red tops, could they perhaps cut them back?

When dinner time rolled around, “Where do you want to eat Mom?” I knew they were all too tired (and smelly) to go out to eat, so we ordered subs.

I think this was the best Mom’s Day yet, I got my guys all day long and got yard cleaned up too! Spending time with them was the best part by far!

Saturday, May 07, 2011

I did something last night I have never done before…

Relay was amazing and I actually had a good time. I’ve done that before. Money rolled in right up to the last minute, but that happens every year. Again I was unable to get on line at the event, boonies, not new to me. I came home at almost midnight on the nose, earlier than years past. I emptied my car and sat down in the chair with my lap top and started entering money on line.

Somewhere between 1 and 2 it happened… I fell asleep in my chair. Whoops, no data going to get entered in my sleep. I started again, but the keys on the keyboard and my fingers weren’t matching and I give up and went to bed. But of course when I went to bed, I kept thinking about the work waiting for me, and the 100 people or so who were walking the track all night and counting on me to do my job.

Fingers and keyboard wouldn’t cooperate so I took two Tylenol and went to sleep for two hours. Got up, took a shower, and started all over again, checking the work I had done, only a few small mistakes, and then finished what I’d not done before nap time.

Our grand total for closing ceremonies was $85,908.15 which of course has already gone up, thanks to on-line donations. And there is more coming we’re sure… we might just make our $100,000 goal by the end of the year.

BUT, that is still not what I have never done before. What WE, my team and I did that we have never done before was… drum roll…. We were #1. The Delaware Quilts team was #1 with a total of $11,373.76. Of that I am extremely proud! Proud beyond proud, super proud, pleased and tickled silly. We did it! In years past that would have placed us at third or even lower, but in this economy we were #1!

Personally, and this is sad to me, my measly $5,220 put me in first place. Yes I am pleased, but also embarrassed. In years past that wouldn’t have even put me in the top ten. But this year I was #1, for closing ceremonies at least. I know that Steph on the MES/HOB team has raised over $7000 so far for the Race for the Ribbon which will be held in June, and her donations will knock me down to second. But that makes me happy, because that’s more money towards finding the cure!

Thank you to ALL of the donors who made it all happen, to my team and to all the other teams at all the other Relays all around the world. Together we will find the cure.
But remember, there is no finish line until we find that cure!
Now back to quilting!

Friday, May 06, 2011


East Sussex Relay For Life

Let’s hope the money we raise today finds the cure for cancer!